Today's media systems normally incorporate multiple components including a receiver, television, cable or satellite box and a DVD player. If you have a Sony brand television or receiver, the supplied remote can typically be programmed to control non-Sony DVD players. These remotes are also sold separately, spanning different memory capabilities, sizes and features like touchscreens. Using such a remote consolidates control in one unit, eliminating coffee table clutter. Although not all Sony remotes are programmable, the ones that are can be quickly programmed.
If your media system is easy to use, there's a good chance you and the rest of your household will use it more. Universal remotes, by consolidating multiple devices into one simple unit, facilitate this. Universal remotes also makes it less stressful to upgrade or swap out older components with new devices, given a shorter learning curve based on familiarity with a user-friendly remote.
Any infrared remote relies on light beams to control devices. This means batteries with sufficient charge and a clear line-of-sight are necessary. If you need to keep components in a closet, cabinet or another room, infrared repeater kits or radio frequency extenders bypass the line-of-sight requirement. During the programming process, you'll want to ensure that your batteries are fresh since some remotes lose memory after a certain amount of time without power. As a result, the programming process may have to be repeated with each battery change. You'll also need the programming code for your specific DVD player, found in the Sony remote's user guide or on the Sony website.
Buttons and Layout
Sony remotes come in a few flavors. The most basic design incorporates a series of hard buttons, with the layout mimicking a standard remote control issued with a television or home theater receiver. These usually include transport controls for a DVD player or digital video recorder, input select buttons for your television and directional buttons to navigate through device menus. Advanced versions include touchscreens for more complex setups, and hybrid designs incorporate both. Generally, the presence of a touchscreen or LCD readout indicates a more advanced remote control, offering memory for more devices and commands and a slicker user interface.
Programming your DVD Player
Different Sony remotes have slight variations in programming protocol. A mid-grade universal, the Sony RM-VL1000, offers a straightforward method of incorporating your DVD player's commands into memory. Turn on your DVD player. Press the "Set" button on the Sony remote until it shows on the LCD display. Press the "Preset" button, then tap the "DVD" button to choose this device type to learn. Press the "Scroll" button to move down the LCD screen if this option is not immediately visible. Locate the DVD player manufacturer's device code. Enter this code using the remote's numerical keypad. Press the "Ent" button, then aim the unit at the DVD player and press "Power." If the code was successful, the DVD unit will power off. If not, you must repeat the process with another code selection until you can successfully turn off the DVD.
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